ADVISORY e-ALERT     September 30, 2011 
Advisory Law Group, a Professional Corporation  





Socialism is alive and well, and I'm not simply talking about the socialistic charade of Hugo Chavez.


Instead, I'm talking about the employee or subcontracted members of your group who, even though they are being paid every penny due to them pursuant to their employment agreement or subcontract, have the misguided mindset that "there is money missing" or that the partners are "stealing money," as if any purportedly "missing" or "stolen" money would, in any event, be theirs.


Perhaps this is simply a symptom of a larger societal problem: the cancer of social justice which is simply a pig-in-a-skirt term for an entitlement attitude magnified to the level of socially acceptable theft.


But there are other contributing factors totally within the control of the group and its leaders:

  • Strategy: Groups often have no actual business strategy which in many cases fosters a collegial approach to the business of medicine. We're all in this together morphs into we're all in business together. If so, where's my money?
  • Poorly documented relationships: The world in which the difference between a $2,000 employment agreement and a $15,000 one is often millions in damages to your partners. Oops, you mean subcontractors. Have you created a de facto partnership?
  • Actions: Even if the agreement between the group and its employed or subcontracted physicians is properly structured and documented, it doesn't help if its not signed or if the group takes action, or its leaders make statements, contrary to its provisions. These gaffes provide the toe holds for disgruntled physicians to use when climbing into your bank account.

The impact of this thinking, whether resulting simply from the subcontractors misguided mindset or fostered by errors on the part of the group, is cancer-like. If allowed to grow, it will, at best, cause dissension within the ranks. At worst, it will result in employees and subcontractors running off to hospital administration to complain about their "unfair" treatment, the likely result of which will be their use by the administrator as weapons to destabilize your group's leadership structure.


Yes, to use another socialist analogy, this time from the other side of the ideological coin, your employees and subcontractors will be used as useful idiots to destroy your leadership and, in the long run, to destroy the idiots themselves.


If your patient had cancer it would be removed. If your group has cancer. . . 



The Myth of Physician Alignment 


View Episode 33 of the Wisdom. Applied Videocast 





All Things Personal

I often receive calls from potential clients whom I choose not to represent.  My usual practice is to suggest one or two other attorneys who are capable of handling their matter.  I'll call these lawyers and let them know that so-and-so will likely be calling them.
Over the past few weeks two of these referral instances stand out as examples of what not to do to a referral source:  Ignore them.

The first involved the referral of what might be a very large project in an area that does not interest me.  I told "Sally" that I'd make a few calls for her to attorneys I recommend.  So far I've left two messages apiece for those attorneys - neither of whom, I am told, is on vacation or out of town.  Neither has called back.

The other involved a small matter below my threshold for involvement.  It concerned a specialized area, so I called a friend for some recommendations as to who might handle it.  I called and emailed each of the three suggested attorneys; only one called back - he got the case.

The point of the story isn't that other attorneys don't return phone calls (no news there); rather it's that when someone is trying to hand you business, that is, make a referral, and all you have to do is respond, some people don't have the sense to know what to do; or if they have the sense, they can't follow through.

The same lesson applies to physicians and the referral of patients, whether it's a one on one direct referral to an office based specialist or a "referral" from one physician to an exclusive contract holding group.  

Referrals are a significant portion of the lifeblood of a professional practice.  Pissing off the referrer is a really stupid move.  

You may fully understand this intellectually, but putting it into practice is another matter.  And, even if you are among the world's best in responding to, and befriending, and being polite to, and etc. etc. etc. with referral sources, what are your partners or your employees (from brain surgeon to receptionist) doing to build up, or tear down your practice?


How Scenario Surveys Strengthen Strategy, published in the September 2011 issue of Pain Medicine News.

Scenarios Can Shape Group Strategy, published on on August 24, 2011. 


To read other recent articles, click here.




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The materials presented in this Advisory e-Alert are educational only and are neither legal advice nor a substitute for it. Advisory e-Alert presents a general discussion which may or may not apply to your particular legal or factual circumstances. The distribution of Advisory e-Alert is not intended to create, nor does it create, an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send us confidential information without receiving explicit authorization from Advisory Law Group to do so. Do not take or avoid taking any action as a result of the materials presented in this e-Alert without first obtaining legal counsel.   
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Not Much is Fair About Fair Market Value



The fair market valuation process is often unfair, blind to value and generally ignores the true market.

And, that's not the worst part.


Now learn about its negative impact on physician compensation, group stipends and the ability to do real world deals.


When: Nov 16, 2011

Time: 4:00 PM Pacific Time

Length: 45 minutes

Investment:  $315 Complimentary for e-Alert readers


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Let Us Know What Business/Legal Issues You'd Like to See Addressed in A Future Issue
Warning Sign
In This Issue
Is Socialism Alive and Well Within Your Medical Group?
Videocast: The Myth of Physician Alignment
All Things Personal
Recently Published Articles
The e-Alert Archive
2011 Anesthesia and Radiology Business Updates Now Available
The Wisdom. Applied. Blog
Q & A Video Series
The Immediate Leader Experience
Mentor Program





Listen and subscribe to Mark's podcast series, Wisdom. Applied., now on iTunes.










Whether you're an anesthesiologist, a radiologist or another hospital based or office based physician, there's tremendous value waiting for you in your complimentary copy of Advisory Law Group's 2011 Anesthesia Business Update and 2011 Radiology Business Updates.

Click on the images below to access the download page.   
2011 Anesthesia Business Update   

2011 ALG Radiology Business Update

Follow this link to Mark's blog, Wisdom. Applied.




Overhear Mark's responses to medical group strategy and business questions.
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Q & A video page.    







You're a physician who wants to form a medical group and, among other things, subcontract with or employ other physicians, enter into exclusive contacts, obtain significant stipend support money, create related entities to increase protection and the like. And you want to come up to speed on all of this immediately.

Or, you're the new leader of an existing group with complex practice and business operations -- you need to understand how to master the group's organizational, operational and leadership issues -- and you need to be brought up to speed immediately.


After having regularly dealt for many years with physicians in both of these contexts, we've designed a process to deliver immediate results: The Immediate Leader Experience™.


The Immediate Leader Experience™ takes place over a weekend in Santa Barbara, California and includes two nights accommodation at the Four Seasons Santa Barbara Biltmore Hotel. 


In two short days, you'll be entirely up to speed, totally prepared and confident.  You'll be armed with tools and sample documents.


Due to the nature of this program, admission is upon interview only -- there is extremely limited availability.


For further information on The Immediate Leader Experience™ follow this link.   
For information on Mark's mentor program, click on the following link:  The Advisor Program.